Specialty Insights

News and advice for job seekers and hiring managers.

In-Person Interview Tips

In-Person Interview Tips

1. BE ON TIME! Arrive 15 minutes early. There is no excuses for being late. You don’t want to start off on a bad foot with the interviewer. First impressions go far. Leave extra early, do whatever it takes. Blaming it on traffic or anything else doesn’t matter (even if it’s true).

2. KNOW THE COMPANY / HOSPITAL YOU ARE INTERVIEWING WITH! Use the web and Google the Hospital/Facility before you go in for an interview. Gather as much information about the Hospital/Facility regarding its history, mission, goals, and future plans. If you’re asked why you want to work for the company, you better not say “I like the location”.

3. TURN YOUR CELL PHONE OFF! Although this is obvious-it’s easily forgotten. Double and triple check to make sure your cell phone ringer is turned off. Once that phone rings, you will get embarrassed and the mood will change in the room.

4. BRING COPIES OF YOUR RESUME. Make sure it’s the same version they have too! Your interviewer(s) will most likely have a copy of your resume but bring some extras. It shows you’re prepared and serious about getting the job. Make sure that the resume you sent them is the same version you initially sent them.

5. DRESS ATTIRE – Guys, don’t forget to shave! Make sure you go into a job interview having showered and wearing clean pressed clothes. If you like wearing cologne or perfume, don’t wear any on the day of the interview, or if you decide to wear any fragrance, use it in moderation. What’s subtle smelling to you may be overwhelming to your interviewer. First impressions do matter. Employers will take your physical appearance – fairly or not – as an indicator of how well you will fit into their environment. When dressing for an interview, always dress conservatively: a suit in ‘business’ colors (navy, black, gray), a necktie in solid or a simple pattern (for males), stud earrings (for women), closed-toe shoes. Your hair should be neatly arranged, pulled back from the face. Chewing gum and smoking – don’t do it! Even if the work environment is casual, you’ll impress the employer by your professional appearance!

6. BRING A NOTEPAD! This shows you have an interest and that you’re paying attention.

7. SOCIAL WEBSITES (Facebook, Myspace, Twitter) If you don’t think interviewers Google you or look you up to see what they can find on you, you’re mistaken. Facebook, Twitter are just some areas that tell a lot. This is a way many say “to weed out people who wouldn’t be a good fit in the company’s culture.” Don’t give them any ammo to not like you, set your profiles to private.

8. DON’T TRY TO BE FUNNY! Many people think they are funny when in reality they aren’t. A job interview isn’t the place to test your comedy act. Be friendly and outgoing, save the jokes.

9. KEEP IT SHORT! When answering a question, do just that! Don’t start out answering a question and then veer off to talk about something else. Make sure your answer directly reflects the question being asked. If asked yes or no question, answer with a yes or no unless they ask you to elaborate.

10. DON’T EVER TALK BAD ABOUT A FORMER EMPLOYER! Don’t ever bad mouth a previous boss in a job interview. This is a huge red flag. I don’t care if they are the worst boss on earth, just avoid it. People know if you badmouth someone else, you will most likely do it to your new employer.

11. DON’T SHOW NERVOUS SIGNS! Interviews can be a nervous experience but rubbing your chin, twirling your hair, or anything else along those lines makes you look like you’re lying or lacking confidence, both not good signs to a future employer.

12. EYE CONTACT! Look in their eyes. By staring at the floor, ceiling, or wall when speaking or listening makes you appear disinterested. Again, this might seem so simple and obvious but happens way more then you’d think.

13. HAVE GOALS! Maybe you don’t have any idea where you want to be in a few years professionally but figure out something to say. If you don’t and you’re asked, you appear un-ambitious, which leads an interviewer to think you’d be a lazy employee.

14. HAVE ACCOMPLISHMENTS! Most are asked in an interview to talk about something that you’re proud of accomplishing, whether professionally or personally (or a failure and what you learned from it). Be ready for this question.

15. ASK QUESTIONS! At the end of a job interview make sure you have some questions to ask. If the interviewer doesn’t offer you a chance, ask to ask. Again, it reinforces your strong interest in the job, otherwise it just comes off like you really don’t care and just want a paycheck.

Just remember, be yourself but realize that you are being judged on various levels. Excessive smiling, gesturing and talking will be sure to annoy your interviewer and may lead them to suspect that you’re not genuine. Just Relax! Be mindful of your communication skills, avoid slang and (definitely) profanity. Present a firm handshake. Sit comfortably to enable proper breathing. Lean slightly towards the interviewer to show you’re engaged in the discussion. Relax and bring out your best self.

Good Luck!